Theban Mapping Project

I came across this really great website, The Theban Mapping Project (  From the “About TMP” page, “During the last decade, the TMP has concentrated on the Valley of the Kings. Modern surveying techniques were used to measure its tombs. From the data collected, the TMP is preparing 3-D computer models of the tombs. And of course, the TMP is continuing its excavation of KV 5 (Sons of Rameses II).”

By opening the atlas page, the viewer is able to access 3-D renderings of the tombs from both the Theban Necropolis and the Valley of the Kings.  Along with pictures, text, and audio, this website allows one to fully visualize the tombs.  For each tomb, the overall dimensions are given as well the dimensions for each chamber, corridor, etc.

Here is a small amount of the type of information given for each site:

General Site Information

Structure: KV 5
Location: Valley of the Kings, East Valley, Thebes West Bank, Thebes
Owner: Sons of Rameses II
Other designations: 5 [Lepsius], 8 [Hay], Commencement d’excavation ou grotte bouchée [Description], M [Burton]
Site type: Tomb

Site Location

Latitude: 25.44 N
Longitude: 32.36 E
Elevation: 169.87 msl
North: 99,637.895
East: 94,095.771
JOG map reference: NG 36-10
Modern governorate: Qena (Qina)
Ancient nome: 4th Upper Egypt
Surveyed by TMP: Yes

Additional Tomb Information

Entrance location: Valley floor
Owner type: Prince
Entrance type: Staircase
Interior layout: Corridors and chambers
Axis type: Straight


Raised relief

Go check it out, it is very informative.  ~TB


The Mystery of the Cocaine Mummy

As shocking as the title suggests, scientists have uncovered large traces of cocaine and nicotine in the mummified body of Henut – Taui, the Lady of Two Lands. What does this mean when the very place where these drugs come from is thousands of miles away, and the introduction of which won’t be seen for thousands of years?

When Henut-Taui’s sarcophogus was undisturbed from her burial during the 21st Dynasty until the early 19th century, when her tomb was plundered and her coffin sold and put on display without being opened. In 1992, Dr. Svelta Balabanova, a German toxicologist, wanted to test the drug content of the mummies on display in a museum in Munich, and what she discovered baffled Egyptologists and scientists alike. Using the drug test we all dread, the hair shaft test, she discovered that there was no compromise to the evidence as many had suggested; there was, in fact, residual amounts of cocaine and nicotine in hers and six others mummified bodies.

Hoax? False mummies? Extinct plants? Trans-continental trade established before Colombus discovered the Americas? Watch and find out!


(Alexa Straughan)

Out, out damn spot!

One of the Pharaohs we discussed today in class was Hatshepsut.She claimed the right of Pharaoh and leader. She claimed not only the right as the daughter to the former Pharaoh, but also supposedly by relation of a God. She was the only child born to the Egyptian king Thutmose I by his primary wife and queen, Ahmose, Hatshepsut was expected to be queen. After the death of her father at age 12, Hatsheput married her half-brother Thutmose II, whose mother was a lesser wife. This was of course a common practice meant to ensure the purity of the royal bloodline.( a little Game of Thrones like, in my book) During the reign of Thutmose II, Hatshepsut assumed the traditional role of queen and primary wife. While she claimed the right of Pharaoh after her husband died, her step son was supposed to take over when he was a bit older. She was very sneaky in her way of getting her followers to do as she commanded, so as to not be booted out of her throne. She built many monuments and statues. However when she was portrayed, she had a body of a male ruler, so that she could be truly pharaoh throughout history.  However, when her reign was finally through due to her death, her step son came into power and attempted to eradicate every trace of the former Pharaoh, his step mother. No, he wasn’t mad at all! He even de-faced her royal image on the statues.  – CL